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John Frieh

[TR] Valdez, AK - Classics 2/3/2011

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Trip: Valdez, AK - Classics

 

Date: 2/3/2011

 

Trip Report Summary:

2/24: PDX -> ANC -> Valdez, AK. Climbed Hung Jury (1p; 55 meters) and Fang Gully (group solo; 90 meters)

2/25: Bridalveil Falls (4p; 185 meters) + Simple Twist of Fate (2p; 75 meters)

2/26: Keystone Greensteps (4p; 200 meters)

2/27: Valdez, AK -> ANC -> PDX

 

First and foremost many many thanks to Mackenzie and Eric for their gracious hospitality.

 

Also thanks to wfinley and Jake_Gano for taking the time to answer all my dumb AK beta questions

 

I can't find the words to convey how rad Valdez, AK is. Consider this:

 

- 200 meter routes 3 minutes from the car

- we started climbing no earlier than 8:30 am each day and not once got scooped by another party.

- in fact we only saw 5 other ice climbers the entire trip. FIVE.

- the routes we climbed (which are 3 minutes from the car) receive so little traffic not one was picked out. We even had to make v threads to get off (if that tells you how rarely these get climbed).

- it never dropped below 10 degrees during the day the entire weekend.

 

But yeah: I hear Canada is great this time of year. :laf:

 

Seriously though: make it a point to climb ice in Valdez, AK at least once in your lifetime. Let me know if you need a partner. :wave:

 

Get motivated: Alasak Ice Climbing

 

Enough prose... some pictures:

 

Day 1: Hung Jury and Fang Gully. Photo taken from the car.

hungjuryroadside.JPG

 

Crazy wind shaped ice formations on Hung Jury

JFhung.JPG

 

Scoops, Umbrellas, and Bells the size of cars

MDhung.JPG

 

Skander on Fang Gully

SSfang.JPG

 

Day 2: Bridalveil Falls and Simple Twist of Fate. Photo taken from the car.

bridalveil_edit.JPG

 

Following pitch 1

brideJP.JPG

 

Following pitch 2

MDbride.JPG

 

Marcus leading pitch 3 the "Killer Pillar"

MDbride_pillar.JPG

 

Pitch 2 of Simple Twist of Fate

JFtwist.JPG

 

Day 2: Keystone Greensteps. Photo taken from the car.

keystone_green_steps_edit.JPG

 

Marcus tackling a very technical pitch 1

MDgreen_big.JPG

 

MDgreen.JPG

 

Pitch 2

keystone_p2.jpg

 

Pitch 4: Now you see me, now you don't

full.jpgon.jpg

 

 

Gear Notes:

clown car

 

Approach Notes:

Alaska Air

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Thanks for the stoke :tup:!

 

That looks like a Wicked Wanda :brew:. Very cool!

JFhung.JPG

 

 

But yeah: I hear Canada is great this time of year. :laf:

 

Nice to see you survived the 3 min approaches with your helmet on :)

 

 

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Thanks all.

 

@Schmitz & Mark: got some beta from a local on BIG rigs that come in every October. Pencil it in dudes

 

@Gene: you know it!

 

@Anastasia: nice work in CAN. You're representing the PDX ice climbing contingent quite well this winter :tup:

 

 

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Sweet, those approach times remind me of Nipigon. Only we'd be talking ft rather than m.

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Awesome John. Keep up with the training for Mt. Dickey. I look forward to that TR ;)

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Awesome! You were there the right week. This is what Valdez looked like a week ago; 95mph winds in town - 100mph gusts up on the pass!

 

[video:youtube]

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